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YaBB SE Community  |  English User Help  |  FAQ  |  Topic: How can I get my problems solved faster? « previous next »
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Author Topic: How can I get my problems solved faster?  (Read 8447 times)
Joseph Fung
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How can I get my problems solved faster?
« on: April 30, 2002, 10:19:04 AM »
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There are really 3 things you need to take into consideration when posting a problem.  The first, is that the support people aren't telepathic, the second is that the support people are human and the third is that there is a search function.

What I mean by the first, is that if you simply write "HELP!" or "my board's not working" it's very difficult to help you.  Generally, it is better to give too much informaton than too little.  So when posting, use a descriptive subject and a detailed post.  I've created a sample post below which would be more than acceptable ;)
Quote
Help! I've been trying to install this thing for hours and can't get it to work.
I'm hosted on prohosting (a paid account rather than their free service)
I'm fairly competent in PHP so I don't believe it's an ID 10-T problem
I downloaded the regular package, and while it manages to extract all the files ok (I checked - they're there), it can't seem to put anything into the database.

The errors I'm getting are of the form "ERROR inserting data package 1", etc...

My database is already created, and I'm sure the username, password and server are correct as I'm runnning a PHP chat in that database too.

I'm running PHP version 4.04, mySQL 3.23. and I don't have phpMyAdmin (the host is annoying that way).

I've tried using the regular and the safemode package, and both generate the same error - and I chmodded everything correctly according to the readme file.

While the post on it's own may not have enough information to diagnose the exact problem, it gives the support people enough to start with.

The second point I made was that the support people are human.  That means they can get annoyed and they can take offense.  Remember - this is free software, they don't 'owe' you anything, so it pays to be kind when asking for help.  A couple things you should do when posting are:
  • avoid insulting the support people or the software - generally, this will not make them want to help you
  • post in proper language - typos are one thing, but if you post in l33t sp34k or use excessive short-forms like cu etc. it makes it an effort to understand the post
  • be patient - the support people do have things to do other than lurk on these boards - many of us have school or fulltime jobs - don't assume we can answer within the hour.
  • avoid cross-posting.  Generally, it's best to post in one board - posting in multiple boards just annoys people.  If you're problem really does affect 2 areas (i.e. templates and other help) then at least have the courtesy to post a link to your cross-post so that when it's solved, the moderators can lock them


The final point I made was that there is a search feature.  That means use it ;).  There is very little more frustrating than having someone make a post about a problem that is already addressed in 50 other posts.  Especially when one of those posts is a sticky topic in the help board.  Take a minute to search for some relevant posts before blaring your problem everywhere.

So, if you provide a lot of information, and are reasonable in your expectations, you are much more likely to get timely responses.
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Greg Robson
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2002, 01:14:35 PM »
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These are the support boards available at the time of typing...
  • Installer Help - for those with problems installing the board.
  • Other Help - This is where the majority of problems get posted
  • Administration Help - If you are having problems with the tools to keep your board maintained such as the admin section.
  • Converter Help - For those having problems with upgrading from YaBB 1 Gold or wanting advice on converting from another bulletin board.

For those whose English is not too good there are language specific boards, please note that replies may not be as quick as there are fewer people who speak foreign languages fluently. :)
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andrea
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2002, 02:15:38 PM »
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... as there are fewer people who speak foreign languages fluently.  

This might be wrong. Current World Statistics:
1. Mandarin (Chinesisch): 726
2. Englisc:h 427
3. Spanisch: 266
4. Hindi: 182
5. Arabisch: 181
6. Portugiesisch: 165
7. Bengali (Indisch): 162
8. Russisch: 158
9. Japanisch: 124
10. Deutsch:121
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Jeff Lewis
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2002, 02:29:38 PM »
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I think he means fewer people here at YaBB SE that speak multiple languages fluently :)
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andrea
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2002, 02:53:17 PM »
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I doubt this, too. I suppose most of people in this board speak another language than english fluently. As canadian you also speak french, right? If you look at the member map, half of members that have placed a pin are outside USA, so speak probably another language than english.
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Jeff Lewis
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2002, 03:37:57 PM »
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It's not worth an argument over, I think he was saying that we have tried to cover most languages we speak but we don't all speak second languages fluently.  yes I speak French but a lot of people I know don't.

You aren't required to know it here...
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andrea
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2002, 05:01:18 PM »
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I agree completely with Josephs hints for informative problem reporting and also with Greg's guess that you have faster support in english boards.

It was just an excursion on precise argumentation. English is probably not the primary language of most of us but the common language of most of us.
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Greg Robson
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2002, 09:04:40 PM »
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I was just trying to make that point that if you speak Spanish and no English then you might have to wait a bit longer for a reply as there are fewer people who can produce an answer in fluent Spanish.

Also the odds of someone reading that post with a short amount of time are less due to the smaller number of foreign speakers. :)
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groundup
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2002, 11:30:08 PM »
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what i hate more than anything is when people IM you asking you for help.  You say yes, attempt to help them and then it turns into that you are building their entire site.  I also hate it when people constantly IM you for more help. >:(
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Greg Robson
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2002, 02:48:11 AM »
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Yes, I agree with you groundup.

Don't IM the developers, beta testers, admins or moderators and ask for help, post in the other help board instead. :)

Please remember that most of us here have either:
a) full-time jobs or
b) full-time education (school / university)

so we don't always have time to deal with installation/upgrade requests etc

If I get IM'ed when busy I'll just tell you to post in the forum. You'll get a reply from someone with time.

And please don't get upset when we can't install you're forums, a lot of us have God rankings for posts - it doesn't mean we're Gods though. We aren't able to install boards on every host.

Remember: The YaBB SE community is growing and was only formed in December 2001 so be patient - I don't think we've let anyone down yet.
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groundup
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2002, 03:22:37 AM »
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it doesn't mean we're Gods though

speak for yourself ;)
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Greg Robson
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #11 on: May 04, 2002, 03:57:01 AM »
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it doesn't mean we're Gods though

speak for yourself ;)

I don't have to - I have minions to speak for me and do my bidding ;)
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David
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2002, 11:57:21 PM »
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Another thing, if your problem occurs when you are posting a message and you do not have guest posting enabled please set up a test account for us to use.
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Angel Skin
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Re:How can I get my problems solved faster?
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2003, 08:09:56 AM »
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I think the mods are great help.

Can I add a tip?

Try and make a note of the url for responses to earlier queries.  That way if it is asked again, you can post the thread saving the support time.
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